Agriculture / Agribusiness

France’s INTACT Breaks Ground on Low Carbon Facility to Produce Legume Proteins for Plant-Based Foods

INTACT, a French company specializing in vegetable proteins from regenerative agriculture legumes, has begun constructing a new low-carbon facility in Baule, in the Loiret region of the country.

The new plant will transform peas and other legumes into plant proteins for plant-based foods, neutral alcohol, and biomass for heating using an innovative fermentation technology.

Marc Fesneau, the French Minister for Agriculture and Food Sovereignty, was present at the ceremony, signaling the growing interest and investment in plant-based agriculture in France. Fesneau said that the company’s commitment to ecological agriculture aligns with France’s ambition to double the area dedicated to legume production by 2030, reports ActuOrléans.

The strategic location of the Baule facility, within an agricultural hub and supported by Axereal, will propel the development of the regenerative agriculture sector. Axereal is a leading agricultural and food processing cooperative group producing ecological legumes.

Reportedly, it will supply 8,000 tons of legumes by 2024 and 30,000 tons by 2025 for processing at INTACT’s facility. The alt-meat brand HappyVore and the plant juice extractor Atelier Inové are members of the cooperative already operating in the region.

INTACT's range of plant-based proteins
© INTACT

Fermentation for sustainable foods

Established in 2022, INTACT claims it has developed an innovative technology that allows it to co-produce “unprecedented” sustainable plant proteins and fermentation products, such as neutral alcohol.

The company’s production is based on a circular, low-carbon fermentation technology that emits three times less CO2 than conventional processes. It yields 25% plant proteins and 65% neutral alcohol for cosmetics.

The plant ingredients are said to be rich in proteins (55%), a source of fiber and nutrients, allergen and GMO-free, and low in sugar, salt, and saturated fat. They can be used as an alternative to soy proteins or traditional flour to improve the nutritional profile of plant-based foods or to replace eggs.

Meanwhile, INTACT’s legume alcohol has already received recognition, including the Cosmetic 360 Special Jury Prize, which rewards outstanding innovations in the industry. INTACT expects to commercialize its sustainable products for the food, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical industries in the first semester of 2025.

“Our products aim to promote a regenerative transition. The way we eat has a major impact on our health and that of our Earth. Food and agriculture can play a positive role in helping society meet the environmental and climate challenge,” states INTACT on its website.

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